15th March 08:49
Yet another first solo (yet another first post)
First, my compliments to this group for a way-above-average signal to noise
ratio. You just might restore my faith in cyber-humanity yet.
On with it...
The weather and scheduling gods smiled upon me today, and combined with my
boss being out of town, I skipped out of work a little early to meet my CFI
at Lake Ridge Aeropark (8NC8, Durham, NC) to try and squeeze in a hour
before ground school started. I was just hoping to brush up on accelerated
stalls and go-arounds, knowing these were the last 2 things on my pre-solo
must-cover list. Anthony mentioned I was "2 or 3 lessons away" from soloing
at my last session. I guess now I see how CFIs can keep their students from
worrying all day about soloing, as I wasn't even expecting this for another
week or two.
We went up and practiced some stalls and emergency landings for an hour. We
turned off to taxi back to the hanger, just in time for ground school, or so
I thought. I had a few butterflies when Anthony radioed to the chief
instructor, asking "Mind if we solo this guy?" Log book signed, door shut,
and that C-152 seemed a whole lot bigger. From reading this group, I've come
to expect the improved takeoff performance, but I wasn't ready for the
pleasant surprise of a little elbow room in the C-152 :-)
The PTT on the left side wasn't working, and there was a hand-held I could
have used or the standard mike, but I opted to simply plug my headset on the
right and use the operable PTT on that yoke.
All in all, things went well. The late-afternoon air was very smooth, with
just a few burbles over the lake and the tree lines and negligible wind.
There was a little traffic in the pattern, including a courteous helicopter
driver that did a "hover-and-wait-final", allowing me to back-taxi for my
3rd takeoff. One of my patterns was a little sloppy in that I was a little
too far downwind when turning base, outside of power-off gliding distance.
But other than that, I was pleased with my approaches and landings.
I was especially glad that I didn't bounce or balloon when, after I taxied
back and shut her down, Anthony pointed out that the ground school class had
delayed their start in order to observe and critique my landings from the
picnic deck. If I had known beforehand I had that kind of audience, I'm sure
I would have been a little distracted.
I feel very fortunate to be taking lessons where I am, with a great group of
instructors. Plus 8NC8 is a great place to learn being that it's a turf
strip with tall trees on 3 sides. Learning to land there has done a lot for
my confidence. We're also next door to RDU's class-C airspace, and it's fun
to get into that mix.
Thanks for allowing me to share.
15th March 08:49
Congratulations Matthew! Almost ignored the post due to the acronym...glad
I read it. Re: this newsgroup above the S/N ratio, couldn't agree more.
It's a great place to hang out and keep learning.
Enjoy that silly grin and people wondering how come you're just so happy all
of a sudden :-)
"When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the Earth
with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there
you will always long to return"
- Leonardo Da Vinci
(Remove the obvious from address to reply via e-mail)